William Arnold Taylor, the present master commissioner of the McLean Circuit Court, has practiced law at Calhoun thirty-five years and has some of the unusual accomplishments and scholarship long associated with the best representatives of the legal profession. His education was largely a matter of self achievement, and he has explored a number of diverse fields of knowledge. He is a student by nature, and for a number of years was a successful teacher before he entered law.
Judge Taylor was born on a farm in Daviess (now McLean) County, December 2, 1853. His ancestry goes back to his great-grandfather, Phillip Taylor, who married Harold Arnold, a sister of Benedict Arnold. Her family name has been continued in successive generations as a Christian name in the Taylor family. Philip Taylor brought his family to Kentucky and settled in McLean County when practically the entire region was on the frontier. He lived out his life here and was buried in McLean County. His son, Arnold Taylor, was born in the State of Delaware, near the Maryland line, and for many years lived on Green River, where Taylor’s Landing commemorates his name. He was past 106 years of age when he died. His wife was Patsie Wilcher. The father of the Calhoun lawyer, also named Arnold Taylor, was born September 7, 1813, in what was then Ohio County, afterward becoming Daviess County and now McLean County, and died in his eighty-fourth year. His mature life was identified with agriculture and he was one of the exceptionally good farmers of his time, progressive, industrious, and a leader in community affairs. He married Mary Frances Brown, who was born in Oldham County, Kentucky, a daughter of William Henry and Wilmetta (Hardin) Brown, and a granddaughter of Nathaniel Brown, a native of North Carolina. Mary Frances Brown Taylor was the mother of four sons and one daughter, and by a second marriage Arnold Taylor had five other children.
William Arnold Taylor was reared on his father’s farm near Beech Grove, where he attended country schools. He also attended school at South Carrollton, had some private instruction, and his quest of education and information has been practically a life-long pursuit. For ten years he was engaged in teaching. His study of the law brought him admission to the bar in 1883 and in 1886 he took up active practice for eight years served as county surveyor and did a great deal of work in that profession.
Mr. Taylor has always voted as a republican. He is a member of the Masonic Order and of the Christian Church. He has acquired some farm interests in McLean County. February 1, 1891, he married Miss Zula Bell Nall, of McLean County. They have a family of four sons and one daughter.
Source: Kerr, Charles, William E. Connelley, and E M. Coulter. History of Kentucky. Chicago: American Historical Society, 1922. Page 264-5.